Sunday, August 17, 2014

An abnormal attachment

Today I said farewell to our crib. And it made me strangely wistful.
The crib was fantastic, don't get me wrong. It was a Stokke Sleepi crib, oval shaped which fit just so into the corner of the alcove where my daughter slept. Or should have slept. But more on that later.  The crib was multipurpose: It's a crib! Take out a piece, it's a bassinet! Take out some of the rails, it's a toddler bed! Move a few things around, it's a pair of chairs! Those Scandinavians do not mess around with their funky yet functional design.
I bought it used on the local parents listserv for $300 almost exactly 3 years ago. The crib was my first big baby purchase. In fact, it was probably my only big baby purchase. At the point at which I bought it, I was about to enter my third trimester and I hadn't registered for a single item. I couldn't do the research or get excited about any of the gear. It was all too overwhelming.
My pregnancy was a surprise and the relationship which created "the situation" (which was what my daughter's dad and I adorably referred to the fetus as, tongue-in-cheekily, back when we adorably thought we might end up together) had ended abruptly and painfully. I knew this baby was a miracle and deep down, I was so thrilled to be carrying her but at that point, the terror of single motherhood outweighed any joy which was lurking in my nooks and crannies.
But I knew I wanted that crib and when I found this gently used pile of wood, I was thrilled. And I was able to commit to it.
Taking that step and feeling like it was a big deal seems silly now, but I think my attachment to that crib is tied to the fact that I was able to finally move forward as a parent. Okay, I was going to be a freaked-out single mom but at the very least, I had a place for my baby to sleep.

Fast forward to her birth in November, a month early. On our third night in the hospital together, I put pillows against the side rails and slept curled around this incredible little creature who had just entered my life. The rest was history and I became an accidental co-sleeper.

So why the devotion to a piece of furniture in which my daughter only slept in spurts? I think it's because it reminds me of how vulnerable I felt and in contrast I am able to clearly see the strength I found.

The new owners came to pick it up in the late afternoon. They were a bespectacled, humorous couple two weeks in with their second child. They too are leaving Brooklyn and are headed to D.C. We talked about the high rents and lack of space in Brooklyn. They talked about how their own toddler posse had decamped to the suburbs already, though their older child is barely two. They joked with my daughter about her new big girl bed. I felt like they were friends. I'm relieved our crib is going to another truly happy home.
They paid me $325.

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